Friday, July 10, 2009


You know those times when people make statements or maybe ask for your approval on things, and you don’t really agree with them, but you know you should choose your battles, so you lie through your teeth or agree even though you really don’t? Well, I can’t do that very well. I’ve never been good at hiding my emotions – I’ve been told my face shows it all. Now if that isn’t a reason to get Botox, I don’t know what is! I’d like to think this is one of many stellar components of my personality – my face can keep it real even when my mouth can’t. In all honesty though, I know I do this, so I try my hardest to just be me, while also being nice about it.

When I first started derby I was really into the entertainment aspect of it – the name, the character, the dress-up uniform. I painstakingly crafted the image that I wanted the world to see. When Cindy Lop-her was on television, you’d know it was her. How? For one, my season 1 helmet mohawk – green to match my home team and gold to match the travel team. It was prominently featured on a Blood & Thunder postcard, which still hangs on my refrigerator today. I thought the mohawk was bad-ass at the time. Looking back on it now, I wish I had put as much time and energy into my skating as I did that fucking mohawk.

Season 2, I removed the mohawk. After having seen numerous television spots and photos of myself in season 1, I realized I looked awkward, and I decided I wanted to draw less attention to myself. That, and I knew I could use all the help I could get on the track, so I removed the eyesore that was the mohawk, telling my teammates that I didn’t want to stand out in the pack and (gasp! Here comes something thoughtful…) I wanted to be recognized for my skills, not a piece of flair.

As time has gone on, the persona and the uniform have both become more practical – as I’m no longer trying to appear to be the shit, I’m exposing all my personal shit, for one! As far as the uniform goes, it’s just a uniform now. I don’t want to look cute or sexy or bad-ass – I want to be comfortable, cool, and able to move easily. I no longer wear fake eyelashes or even makeup sometimes. I spend the hours before a bout preparing mentally instead of preparing my hair, which is only covered by a helmet and then drenched in sweat in 10 minutes anyhow. Some fans or derby enthusiasts may think I no longer try. I think I’m trying harder than ever.

In the days that I sported the green and gold mowhaws, I was careful not to let my work know I played derby. I wasn’t Cindy Lop-her, I was a professional, and I was to be taken seriously. Editor by day, rollergirl by night. I remember getting nervous when everyone found out about my secret identity.

Today, I sit in my scrimmage jersey on casual Friday, because we wear them when we travel, and I’m headed to the airport almost immediately after work to go to Kansas City. My office door sports the upcoming home bout poster, and my office walls, filing cabinet, and bookshelf all sport the home bout posters of bouts past. I often receive emailed links to national derby stories from my coworkers, and some of their kids even wear tee shirts supporting one of my teams.

A teammate of mine recently relayed some concern over a new haircut, wondering if she would be letting too much of who she was in derby into her upscale job. “It’s not just who you are in derby,” I thought, “It’s who you are.” It was then that I realized I no longer have two lives – I am Cindy Lop-her and Cindy Lop-her is me.

And you know what? I fell a hell of a lot more comfortable this way than I ever did when I wore a mohawk or a business suit. I don't have to worry about controlling my facial expressions either.

PS: Tonight I’m headed to Kansas City in preparation for our bout tomorrow night (6pm EST, I think it will be boutcast on DNN). This is an important game for me. We’re down players for this trip, so I’ll have more playing time than usual, and the chance to prove that I’m a valuable member of the regular roster. I’m going to try not to let that freak me out and to just play aggressive and well and keep my head in the game. I’ll update you as to how it goes come Monday…


DayGlo Divine said...

I still wear my helmet-hawk sometimes. But that's also who I am off the track, so I look and feel just as awkward without it as you did with it.

出張ホスト said...
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家出 said...
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